Dust of falling towers fills the sky,

In disbelief the people stand and stare,

While others in a distant land pass by

The ruin of their village, stark and bare,

The hooded young their weapons hastily fix

While people turn their heads in case they see,

All human, though they’re not inclined to mix

Confirmed, forever enemies to be

What spirit makes men cause a life of pain?

Does fate or kismet rule to make it so?

Can we, so blessed, unconcerned remain?

Must we go on pretending not to know?

Our obligation is to those in need,

We should be generous in our thought and deed?


“© Copyright Ian Grice 2014, all rights reserved

The above image belongs to –



23 thoughts on “Compassion

  1. I forget to mention that if this is your first sonnet then you did an amazing job. I’ve tried writing sonnets, but haven’t come up with one, yet. Maybe I just don’t have a sonnet brain, who knows? Anyway, great job…


  2. Great poem, Ian, which almost ties into mine for today. I wish things could change for the better in our world. I don’t think it will and I’m normally not a pessimist. I just don’t know what the answer is…


  3. Read your last few stories and poems you sent. You are such a great writer! Keep you hobby going.

    On Thu, May 1, 2014 at 4:40 PM, ianscyberspace


    1. I’m struggling a bit health wise these days Esther and its hard to concentrate on my writing but I’ll try and keep going as long as I can. Glad you enjoyed the poem. It was my first attempt at sonnet writing.


  4. Poignant and timely poem Ian….we blame those in power for pittign brother against brother, but it is not that simple. What we hold in our hearts we become…Jane’s comment is ‘spot on’, we need a regular dose of ‘re-empathy’. I really enjoy your work, I always learn something new and it is thought provoking. Thank you. 🙂


  5. Here, here,!
    My brother, Wyon Stansfeld”s theory is that we ALL need a life-changing dose of empathy. He weaves this concept into his lightly sci-hi novel “Toggle”.
    I suggest that we tend to blame those in “power” but we, each of us, at our own levels, commit our own empathetic (cruel) acts. Some might call this sinning. I suggest that this has been going on for as long as man has been on two feet. Perhaps it is more heinous now because our modern communications brings inflicted suffering into the attention of the unheeding masses.
    Good poem, Ian, we need more reminders to goad us into action.


    1. Yes I have to agree we all have individual responsibility and each commits cruel acts in their lifetime. However I’ve found that wherever I’ve travelled in the world people have the same hopes and aspirations and the desire to live peaceably. It is only when the masses are manipulated into feeling threatened that collective hate and mistrust results in war.


  6. Ian, great poem. The generals and politicians sy “hero!’ when one soldier gets and then it’s back to business……..I think this world is being sent to hell in a gilded cage.


    1. Most populations of the world do not hate each other unless the propaganda machines manipulate their thinking. It’s vested interests on all sides who control wars with each other.


      1. Such a shame that it is that way. It is just so sad to me that it is not different and people everywhere could live in peace and be respectful of one another. I guess the wars and propaganda will continue on though no matter how much the majority would like it not to.


  7. Remove the veil and we see evil men – ensconced in palaces, government houses and boardrooms as well as spewing platitudes from the pulpit or prayer mats – who accumulate temporal wealth and power paid with the blood of the gullible and the innocent.

    The Devil is not one with horns and tail, but he who kisses babies, adorns flashy magazine covers, and promises heaven. These are the quintessential wolves in sheepskin.



      1. I was being driven to the airport in Colombo during the first outbreak of the civil war in Sri Lanka. The driver, the only one brave enough to drive to the airport said, as we were discussing the terrible deaths every day and destruction, “When elephants fight, the grass gets crushed.” I need to read you article, but will do when I am less rushed. I always enjoy your writing. You inspire me.


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